‘Many Questions But Few Answers’ - ATP Chief Uncertain Over 2020 Calendar - UBITENNIS
Connect with us

ATP

‘Many Questions But Few Answers’ – ATP Chief Uncertain Over 2020 Calendar

Andrea Gaudenzi says tournaments must not come to an halt if there is a positive COVID-19 test.

Published

on

The head of the ATP has said he is still unsure if a series of tournaments will be able to take place across Asia and Europe later this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Andrea Gaudenzi says there are ‘too many variables’ preventing him from planning ahead due to the worldwide health crises. All professional matches have been suspended since March but they will resume next month. On the ATP Tour, their first tournament will be at the Citi Open in Washington which will start during the second week of August. At present the governing body of men’s tournament has published a provisional schedule which only goes up until the French Open.

“We have no idea how the Asian swing or the European indoor season could go. It might sound obvious, but I can’t predict how the virus will affect us going forward, there are too many variables to consider,” Gaudenzi told Sky Sport Italia.

It appears that chances of tennis events being staged in China are slim. Recently the General Administration of Sport published recommendations that no international events are held in the country for the rest of 2020 unless they are related to Olympic qualification. Although tennis and other sporting organisations are seeking clarity before they scrap their events. Elsewhere, it is being reported that the ATP Finals in London remains on but the Next Gen equivalent that takes place a week before may not go ahead. Another event unlikely to go ahead is the Swiss Indoors in Basel.

Gaudenzi says tennis is at a disadvantage due to the global travel requirements compared to team tournaments. Some players have recently cast doubt over attending the US Open as they are unsure if they will be required to enter quarantine after leaving the country, which is seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases. Marca newspaper reported on Monday that there are ‘ongoing negotiations’ to address this issue.

“We have many questions but few answers, because many answers are objectively impossible to provide,” former world No.18 Gaudenzi admits.
“Compared to other sports, tennis is at a disadvantage precisely because of its global nature. The players get to a tournament from every part of the world, and then move to another nation, if not to another continent altogether. Football and NBA basketball can simply devise a bubble of various sizes and shut themselves in to host their events, something we cannot do.’
“And the national governments aren’t giving us any indication regarding potential exemptions [referring to the quarantine] for the athletes involved in a given event.”

There is still hope

Gaudenzi, who took over as the boss of the ATP earlier this year, says there has been one silver lining to the pandemic with various governing bodies now working closer together. Tennis is guided by seven different organisations – ATP, WTA, ITF and each of the Grand Slam boards. In recent weeks there has been calls for men’s and women’s tennis to merge, but such a move is unlikely to occur in the near future.

“Over the last three months, we have had to make some decisions that were unprecedented in the history of tennis. We, the WTA, and the ITF were in conflict with each other at the onset of the pandemic, everyone was going their own way, but over time and up to today we have begun to work hard with a shared objective in mind, namely the safe resuming of play, which is the only thing that really matters right now.”

Whilst the future is uncertain, Gaudenzi says he is still hopeful. Admitting that the potential of a positive COVID-19 test occurring in tournaments will be something the sport might have to get used to. During the Tour hiatus, there was an outbreak of the virus at the Adria Tour which led to it being cancelled.

“I must remain optimistic, but I also need to keep my feet on the ground,” he said.
“We need to understand that a tournament can’t come to a halt because of a positive test, especially if it’s already in its late stages. This is why we need to keep our guard up, as well as to predict all possible outcomes, before giving the go-ahead to each event. The next two weeks are going to be crucial.”

So far the ATP has given the green light for five tournaments to take place alongside the two Grand Slams.

ATP

Jack Draper Wins In Stuttgart, Potentially Faces Andy Murray in Round Two

Published

on

Jack Draper – ATP Monaco di Baviera 2024 (foto via Twitter @atptour)

Britain’s Jack Draper tight first round win headlined the opening day’s results at the Boss Open 2024 in Stuttgart – and possibly faces a second-round match with Andy Murray who takes on Marcos Giron tomorrow.

Less than 24 hours from the last ball being hit at Roland Garros, the ATP Tour had already switched surfaces onto the grass, and 22-year-old Draper was well tested but ultimately came through in two tie-breakers over Sebastian Ofner.

The sixth seed’s 7-6, 7-6 win contained just one break of serve each, both coming in the second set, as serve dominated proceedings on the faster grass courts in Germany.

While the Austrian won 75% on his first serve, Draper won a whopping 89% behind his first delivery as well as hitting eight aces. These kind of service stats will surely take him far during the grass court season.

“I thought it was a really good match,” Eurosport quoted Draper saying after his match. 
“Both of us played really clean tennis, executing really well.
“When it came down to it, I’m glad I competed really well and got over the line – it’s good to be back on the grass as well.”

There were also wins for Germany’s Yannick Hanfmann who won 6-3, 6-3 over wildcard Henri Squire, while compatriot Dominik Koepfer won in three sets over China’s Zhizhen Zhang 4-6, 7-6, 7-6. 

Continue Reading

ATP

Carlos Alcaraz Still Owns A Magical Racket

Published

on

The legend of Carlos Alcaraz and his magical racket lives on.

The 21-year-old Spaniard executed one magical shot after another with his racket and legs  Sunday afternoon in the French Open final. That bit of magic spelled defeat for Germany’s Alexander Zverev.

This was a final to remember, one of the great matches of all the Grand Slams. It just wasn’t in the cards for the 26-year-old Zverev to finally win a Grand Slam title.

HE HAD IT, THEN HE DIDN’T

Both players seemed to play a game of “he had it and then he didn’t.”

Alcaraz appeared to have everything under control in the first set, but Zverev rushed through the second set and then made a comeback from 5-2 down in the third set to win five straight games.

Zverev had everything going for him when he started the fourth set with a two-set advantage. It appeared that all the 6-6 Zverev had to do was to continue playing his masterful game of big serves and mighty ground strokes.

But Zverev couldn’t get started in the fourth set until he was down 4-0. So much for a smooth and easy ride to a Grand Slam title. By then, the magic of Alcaraz was heating up.

MAGIC OF ALCARAZ HEATING UP

Zverev still had his chances, even when he fell behind 2-1 in the fifth set. He had to feel pretty good about his chances when he took a triple break point lead against Alcaraz’s serve and appeared ready to even the set at 2-2. Even after Carlos came up with a winner to bring the  game score to double break point.

Zverev still was ready to even the entire match.

That’s when everything seemed to go haywire for the German, while all the while, Alcaraz was able to repeatedly come up with his magical shots as the Spaniard made critical shots that looked almost impossible to make.

ALCARAZ HEADED FOR GREATNESS

Everything for Zverev was lost in the magical racket of Alcaraz.

What was then initially called a game-ending Alcaraz double fault and a 2-2 deadlock quicky reversed itself and Alcaraz stayed alive by winning the next three points while taking a 3-1 advantage.

Zverev did get back to a 3-2 deficit and had a break point in the sixth game, but that was it for the hopes of Zverev. The last two games went rather easily in favor of Alcaraz to wrap up a 6-3, 2-6, 5-7, 6-1, 6-2 victory for Alcaraz.

That moved the Spaniard to a higher level of success on the ATP Tour. He became the youngest man to win Grand Slam titles on all of the different surfaces, clay, grass and hard courts.

Carlos Alcaraz and his magical racket appear to be headed for greatness.

James Beck was the 2003 winner of the USTA National Media Award  for print media. A 1995 MBA graduate of The Citadel, he can be reached at Jamesbecktennis@gmail.com. 

Continue Reading

ATP

Tsitsipas Brothers Hit With Trio Of Fines At French Open

Published

on

Stefanos Tsitsipas and his brother Petros have been fined more than 20,000 euros for multiple violations of the coaching rules at this year’s French Open. 

The brothers received a financial penalty during three different matches that they played in. Two of those were in the second and third rounds of the men’s doubles tournament. Furthermore, Stefanos was also penalised during his singles quarter-final match against Carlos Alcaraz, which he lost in straight sets. According to French newspaper L’Equipe, all three of those fines were issued as a result of coaching rules being broken.

Ironically, coaching is allowed during matches at the French Open but certain rules must be followed. ‘Verbal’ coaching can only be issued from the coaches and their team if they are sitting in the designated player’s box. Instructions must be limited to a few words and can only be given if the player is in the same half of the court as their coach. Although non-verbal coaching is allowed regardless of what side the player is on. Finally, players can’t start a conversation with their coach unless it is during a medical break, a bathroom break or when their opponent is changing clothes.

However, the Tsitsipas brothers have been found in violation of these rules, which is likely due to their animated father in the stands who is also their coach. Apostolos Tsitsipas has been given coaching violations in the past at other events, including the 2022 Australian Open. 

The value of the fines are €4,600 and €9,200 for the Tsitsipas brothers in the doubles, as well as an additional €7,400 just for Stefanos in the singles. In total, the value of their fines is €21,200. However, the penalty is unlikely to have an impact on the duo whose combined earnings for playing in this year’s French Open amount to roughly €495,000. 

So far in the tournament, the highest single fine to be issued this year was against Terence Atmane who hit a ball out of frustration that struck a fan in the stands. Atmane, who later apologised for his actions, managed to avoid getting disqualified from the match. Instead, he was fined €23,000. 

Continue Reading

Trending